Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Friday impressed upon Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to ensure early solution for ending the strike by contract workers of the Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC).
In a letter to Dr. Singh, the Chief Minister stated that since the situation had not returned to total normality, the continued low turnout of contract labour was likely to affect power generation.
An early solution would definitely help the large labour force in the festival season, which was fast approaching. Pointing out that the strike was on for nearly a month, the Chief Minister said increase in wages and issues concerning bonus were among the main demands.
Representatives of trade unions and the NLC management had been participating in talks held by the Labour Department but with little avail.
The NLC Chairman and Managing Director (A.R. Ansari) had been bringing to the State government's notice steps being taken by him to maintain power production.
When the talks failed and the management indicated that it would be difficult to maintain generation if the strike continued, the trade union attached to the DMK reverted to work, “in public interest.”
As a result, about 30 per cent to 35 per cent of the contract labour was attending to work now.
According to information reaching the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board, Neyveli Thermal Station – I (meant only for the State) was producing 320 -350 MW. TS – II was generating 882 MW, of which the State's share is 280 MW.
[As on date, two of its units are not working due to technical snag but they are expected to resume production shortly].
TS-I Expansion is producing 315 MW, of which 168 MW is meant for the State.